Sunday, 26 June 2011

Book Prize News

The results of the seasonal heats of The People's Book Prize 2010-2011 are in and Wintercraft has made it through to the final!

Silas and Kate now get to battle it out against eleven fantastic finalists in the children's section.  The winners will be announced on the 20th of July, and voting is now open.

There are no judges; the winners are decided completely by readers.  So, if you enjoyed Wintercraft please spread the word about the award and take a few moments to cast your vote in the final.

You can see a full list of short-listed children's books and find out how to vote here.

(And don't forget, to celebrate Wintercraft's US release, the prize giveaway is still open. If you'd like to enter the draw to win signed copies of Shadowcry and some extra goodies, please add your name to the comments box of my previous post.) 

Bye for now!

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Hello, America!

There are just a few days to go until Shadowcry makes its way over the Atlantic to America!

As a special hello to all my American readers, I think it's time for a giveaway...

The top prize for the first name drawn will be:
  • A signed/dedicated hardback copy of Shadowcry.
  • A Scruffy Crow mug. (I have one of these myself.)
  • A Moleskine notebook with a crow cover design.
Second and third place will each win:
  • A signed/dedicated hardback copy of Shadowcry

To enter the draw, leave a comment at the bottom of this post and I'll draw three names at random on the closing date.

The closing date is my birthday, the 4th of July - American Independence Day.

This giveaway is open to everyone.

Good luck!

The winners of the giveaway have now been drawn. Please check my July 4th post to see if you have won.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

The Month Of May

May was definitely a rollercoaster of a month, but the best part of it had to be the Blackwatch Book Tour.

During the second week of May I caught the train to London to spend the week with my publicist Maura, zipping to and from the capital, visiting schools, libraries and bookshops around southern England.

One of the towns we visited was Worthing on the south coast, where we met this dapper fellow. 

An absolutely enormous seagull!

We were having lunch at a cafe called Parklife (you should go there if you can - their paninis are delicious) when this great feathered beast swooped down looking for a snack.  He managed to grab something from the table beside us before being ousted by the local gull patrol.

This little girl certainly takes her job seriously.

This is me standing on Worthing pier on a rather blustery day.  You can't quite see him in the water behind me, but there was a heroic swimmer out there, braving the cold for an afternoon swim.  Whoever you are, sir, I salute you.

The school groups I spoke to were all fantastic.  (I think Silas may have picked up a few new fans.  I'm not sure what he'd think about that!) The tour days zipped by in a blur of train journeys, gorgeous countryside and London bustle and the week ended with the Headline Bloggers Party!

Here is the view of London from the Headline offices where the party was held.

To get there, I travelled up in the fantastic glass elevator, which is definitely the best way to zoom up the side of building.

I met some lovely people at the party.  I chatted with Rhys from Thirst For Fiction.  Vivienne from Serendipity. Darren from Bart's Bookshelf. Sarah from Feeling Fictional. Michelle from Clover Hill Book Reviews.  Darren from The Book Zone.  Liz and Sarah from My Favourite Books, and more!

I also got to meet the fabulous author and illustrator Cathy Brett, who drew this sketch of me on the day.

If you haven't read her books yet, seek them out, book fans!
It was a brilliant end to a busy week.

The next day I was back on the train home to Darlington, ready to start work on a brand new story.  May was a month of madness, but now I have new pens, new characters and a new world to create. My travelling shoes must rest for a while.
It's time to get back to the desk!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

In Memory Of A Friend

I'm sorry that things have been a little quiet on the blog recently. 

As some of you may already know, one of my dogs, Belle, died a short while ago.  She was my furry writing buddy.  She always laid beside me while I was working and my room now feels empty without her. 

I miss her, and I wish she was still here.

I will never forget my beautiful girl.

Belle. 13th August 2001 - 19th May 2011